The Queer Feels Study


Anyone over the age of 18 who identifies as LGBTQ2SIA, who identifies that they experience discrimination or microaggressions regularly (at least approximately twice per week), who has access to a smartphone, and who currently lives in Canada.


Sexual and gender minority (SGM) individuals are at increased vulnerability to mental health difficulties compared to their heterosexual and cisgender counterparts. Minority stress theory has spawned a large body of research indicating that experiences of stigma and discrimination can account for such mental health discrepancies. Recent research suggests that emotion regulation may be a mechanism through which stigma compromises well-being, however research has yet to examine individual factors related to emotion regulation that may increase vulnerability or bolster resilience to negative well-being following stigma-related events. The proposed study applies the psychological mediation framework (Hatzenbuehler, 2009) to examine pathways from stigma-related events to negative affect and psychological distress. The mediating roles of emotion regulation, resilient coping, self-compassion, social support and internalized stigma will be examined. Moreover, general developmental moderators of the stigma- distress relationship including childhood violence history, and attachment style, will be examined, as well as LGBT-specific moderators of the stigma- distress relationship including discrimination history and LGBT connectedness. LGBTQ2S individuals over the age of 18 (n=125) will be recruited for an online, cross-sectional baseline survey of demographics, emotion regulation ability, childhood violence history, attachment style, social support, self-compassion, resilient coping, LGBT connectedness and experiences of minority stress. Participants will then report on their daily experiences of stressful events, stigma-related events, affect, emotion regulation and emotion-focused coping for 10 days via using a smartphone app. Hierarchical linear modeling will be used to determine the relationship between stigma and affect within participants (Level 1) and across participants (Level 2), and the role of hypothesized mediators will be examined in Level 2 of the model. The proposed study aims to inform LGBTQ2S-specific psychotherapy interventions that focus on emotion regulation, self-compassion and enhancing resilience aimed at alleviating minority stress in LGBTQ2S individuals.

How will this research help LGBT people and communities?

This study fills a gap in quantitative, longitudinal research on sexual orientation and gender identity microaggressions and will inform the development of a theoretical model of the emotional impact of microaggressions on LGBTQ individuals. Second, identifying factors that influence the microaggression-emotion relationship will aid in the development of LGBTQ2S-specific psychotherapy interventions that focus on emotion regulation, self-compassion and enhancing resilience aimed at alleviating minority stress. Moreover, elucidating the specific emotional impact of microaggressions will also inform policy and education aimed at decreasing microaggressive behaviours in schools, universities and workplaces.


Upon completion of each survey, participants will be given the opportunity to enter into a draw. For the first survey there is a chance to enter a draw for 5 $100 VISA gift cards. There is approximately a 1 in 20 chance of winning a gift card. For the daily surveys, each survey participants submit will enter their name into a draw for 10 $50 Amazon gift cards. There is approximately a 1 in 10 chance of winning a gift card.

What mitigation measures are in place to reduce potential distress caused to participants as a result of being part of the research study?

Participants are provided with a list of LGBTQ-specific community and counselling resources across Canada and are encouraged to contact the researcher if their area is not covered in the list of resources.

When do you anticipate that this study's findings will be available?



Name: Natania Marcus




Natania Marcus

Funded By

Ontario Graduate Scholarship



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